Biography

Cynthia Rowland is a business and tax lawyer who helps philanthropists, including private individuals as well as for-profit and non-profit organizations, who wish to make the world a better place.

As a business attorney and strategist, she helps her clients achieve personal, family, business, charitable, philanthropic, and community objectives. Cynthia’s expertise in this regard is broad, and includes entity formation, business transactions and grant agreements, regulatory compliance matters, partnerships and joint ventures, and mergers and dissolutions. In short, she’s well-attuned to the legal needs of philanthropic families, all forms of nonprofit organizations, and business enterprises with a corporate social responsibility directive.

She also advises trustees and directors of charitable organizations on fiduciary and tax issues, including those raised by actual and potential conflicts of interest, regulatory investigations and audits, debt financing of capital projects, including tax exempt bonds, as well as issues raised by settlement of complex litigation involving the fiduciaries and charitable organizations.

Cynthia has a particular expertise in the legal and tax issues of corporate philanthropy—business enterprises using philanthropy to benefit their communities, push the boundaries of emerging science and technology not yet adequately funded by private capital, and other emerging approaches the betterment of the planet and its inhabitants. Her clients seek her advice when pursuing charitable co-ventures, fundraising, formation of corporate foundations, and other types of social benefit corporations and entities.

Her approach to her practice combines depth of experience and extensive technical expertise with an openness to innovation. By integrating traditional, proven approaches with new, effective ideas and structures, Cynthia provides wise counsel to clients who are seeking to accomplish charitable objectives in a complex, ever-changing world.

Distinctions

  • Best Lawyers in America, Nonprofit/Charities Law, Tax Law (2021-2023)
  • Northern California Super Lawyers, Nonprofit Organizations (2014-2022)
  • The Legal 500 United States, Recommended - Not-for-Profit (2016-2021)
  • 2015 Annual List of Rainmakers, Minority Corporate Counsel Association
  • 2015 San Francisco Lawyer of the Year - Non-Profit/Charities Law
  • 2011 Outstanding Attorney of the Year Award, American Bar Association's Business Law Section Nonprofit Organizations Committee

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member, Advisory Committee, Walt Disney Family Museum
  • Former Chair, Committee on Nonprofit Corporations, American Bar Association's Business Law Section (2005-2008)

Firm Highlights

Publication

Copyright Issues for Nonprofits

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . This episode covers the basics of copyright law that most nonprofits need to know about. We answer the questions: Who owns what? How...

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Publication

Nonprofit Basics: Supporting Organizations Part 2 - Orientation for Understanding Type III Supporting Organizations

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource .  Episode 24 is the second of two parts that discuss supporting organizations as a special type of public charity. All supporting organizations must...

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Publication

Privacy Policy Best Practices for Nonprofits

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . I’m happy to have my colleague Nate Garhart back for a discussion on privacy laws and how they affect website content development and online...

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Publication

Nonprofit Basics: Supporting Organizations - Part 1

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . This episode is the first of two parts that discuss the definition of supporting organizations as a special type of public charity. All...

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Publication

Nonprofit Basics: Year-End Thoughts and New Year To-Do List

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource .  As the year comes to a close, I thought it would be a good time to take a few moments to chat about...

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Publication

Loot and Private Foundation Rules - Part 2

Welcome to  EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . In this episode, my law partner Hons Yung and I finish our conversation about the first season of the Apple TV+ series  Loot  starring...

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Publication

Nonprofit Websites and Terms of Use - Best Practices and Common Pitfalls

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . Happy New Year, everyone!  In episode 26, Cynthia Rowland and her guest Nate Garhart discuss websites and terms of use and the legal concepts...

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Publication

California’s New Pay Transparency Law

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . Every January brings a slew of new laws that take effect at the federal and state level, and it seems that there are...

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Publication

Loot and Private Foundation Rules – Part 1

Welcome to EO Radio Show – Your Nonprofit Legal Resource . In this episode, my law partner Hons Yung and I bring you what we hope to be the first in an occasional series...

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News

50 Farella Lawyers in 2023 The Best Lawyers in America® and the Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America™; 4 Lawyer of the Year Awards

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